Gulfstream American GA-7 Cougar

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GA-7 Cougar & TB 320 Tangara
Role Personal and trainer aircraft
Manufacturer Gulfstream American Aviation
First flight Initial Grumman prototype 20 December 1974[1]
Gulfstream production prototype 14 January 1977[2]
Introduction February 1978
Produced 1978-1979
Number built 115
Developed from AA-5 series
A GA-7 Cougar on the ramp at Les Cedres Quebec, May 2005

The Gulfstream American GA-7 Cougar is an American all-metal, 4-seat, twin-engined light aircraft.[1]

The Cougar was a twin-engine development of the Gulfstream American AA-5B Tiger and traces its lineage to the AA-1 Yankee Clipper and the Bede BD-1.


Following Gulfstream Aerospace’s purchase of Grumman’s American light aircraft division in 1977, the company embarked on a policy of aircraft model development. During this time the other aircraft in the line, including the AA-1B Trainer and the AA-5B Tiger underwent extensive redesign.

The aircraft line Gulfstream then fielded included the redesigned AA-1C Lynx two seater, the Gulfstream American AA-5A Cheetah and the Gulfstream American AA-5B Tiger single engine aircraft. The next obvious step was to develop the existing twin-engined version of the AA-5, which Grumman American had first flown as a prototype on 20 December 1974. Gulfstream did extensive redesign work on the former Grumman project and the Gulfstream production prototype did not fly until 14 January 1977.[2]

The Cougar uses the same honeycomb and bonded metal construction that is the hallmark of the line since the BD-1. The prototype's single spar wing was upgraded to a double-spar configuration and this allowed a wet wing. The resulting aircraft was designated the GA-7 (for Gulfstream American) and was given the name Cougar in keeping with the existing Lynx, Cheetah and Tiger names for aircraft in the company's line.[1]

The Cougar was intended for the flying school twin-engined trainer market and also as a personal use aircraft. The Cougar is powered by a pair of wing-mounted Lycoming O-320-D1D engines of 160 hp (119 kW). It carries four people at maximum cruise speed of 160 kn (296 km/h) and a typical cruise speed of 140 kn (259 km/h). It was certified under US FAR Part 23 on 22 September 1977.[1][2][3]

Production of the Cougar ran for only two model years, 1978 and 1979 before production was halted. Just 115 Cougars were delivered.[1][3]

In 1995 the type certificate for the GA-7 was sold to SOCATA of France who intended to develop the aircraft and produce it as the TB 320 Tangara. The Tangara was to be powered by two Lycoming O-360-A1G6 engines of 180 hp (134 kW) each. The first Tangara was a modified Cougar, had 160 hp (119 kW) engines and first flew in mid-1996. The complete Tangara prototype was also a converted Cougar and had the 180 hp (134 kW) engines. It first flew in February 1997. Despite SOCATA's plans to put the Tangara into production this never occurred.[1][3]


GA7 Cougar
160 hp (119 kW) version designed by Grumman American and produced by Gulfstream American 1978-79. 115 built.[1]
TB 320 Tangara
180 hp (134 kW) version redesigned by SOCATA. Three Cougars converted to Tangara prototypes 1996-97. Production was never started.[1]

Specifications (Gulfstream American GA-7 Cougar)[edit]

Data from,[1] FAA Type Certificate,[3] The Incomplete Guide to Airfoil Usage,[4] Pilot's Operating Handbook[5] and Pilot Friend[6]

General characteristics

  • Crew: one
  • Capacity: three passengers
  • Length: 28 ft 8 in (8.74 m)
  • Wingspan: 36 ft 10 in (11.23 m)
  • Height: 10 ft 4 in (3.15 m)
  • Wing area: 184 sq ft (17.1 m2)
  • Airfoil: NACA 63A415
  • Empty weight: 2,569 lb (1,165 kg)
  • Gross weight: 3,800 lb (1,724 kg)
  • Powerplant: 2 × Lycoming O-320-D1D four cylinder, horizontally-opposed aircraft engines, 160 hp (120 kW) each


  • Maximum speed: 168 kn (193 mph; 311 km/h)
  • Cruise speed: 160 kn (184 mph; 296 km/h) true airspeed
  • Stall speed: 63 kn (72 mph; 117 km/h) calibrated airspeed, flaps down
  • Never exceed speed: 188 kn (216 mph; 348 km/h) indicated airspeed
  • Minimum control speed: 61 kn (70 mph; 113 km/h) indicated airspeed
  • Range: 1,170 nmi (1,346 mi; 2,167 km) maximum economy with no reserves
  • Service ceiling: 17,400 ft (5,300 m)
  • Rate of climb: 1,150 ft/min (5.8 m/s)
  • Wing loading: 20.65 lb/sq ft (100.8 kg/m2)
  • Power/mass: 11.9 lb/hp (0.14 kg/kW)

See also[edit]

Related development
Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Demand Media (2009). "The Socata Tangara & Gulfstream GA7". Retrieved 2009-12-28. 
  2. ^ a b c Wood, Derek: Jane's World Aircraft Recognition Handbook, page 233. Jane's Publishing Company, 1982. ISBN 0-7106-0202-2
  3. ^ a b c d Federal Aviation Administration (March 2007). "TYPE CERTIFICATE DATA SHEET NO. A17SO". Retrieved 2008-07-02. 
  4. ^ Lednicer, David (October 2007). "The Incomplete Guide to Airfoil Usage". Retrieved 2009-12-30. 
  5. ^ Gulfstream Aerospace (October 1978). "Pilot's Operating Handbook". Retrieved 2009-12-31. 
  6. ^ Pilot Friend (undated). "Grumman GA-7 Cougar performance and specifications". Retrieved 2009-12-30. 

External links[edit]

Media related to Gulfstream American GA-7 Cougar at Wikimedia Commons